Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Case Law


Ernst v. Jesse L. Riddle, P.C., M.D.La.1997, 964 F.Supp. 213 First requisite element of debt under Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is existence of obligation. 


Debbie Jones v. Intuition, Inc. f/k/a BTI Services, Inc. and Tennessee State Assistance Corp., Civil No. 97-2614-G United States District Court W.D. Tennessee Western Division. May 29, 1998 FN2. 15 U.S.C. § 1692a(6)(F)(iii) states in pertinent part: The term "debt collector" ... does not include--any person collecting or attempting to collect any debt owed or due or asserted to be owed or due another to the extent that such activity ... concerns debt which was not in default at the time it was obtained by such person. The court notes, however, that defendant Intuition Inc. does not qualify for exemption under 15 U.S.C. § 1692a(6)(C).  That provisions exempts government entities or officers from suit under the FDCPA provided that the debt collection was made in the performance of official duties.  This exception does not extend to nonprofit organizations with a government contract.  See Brannan v. United Student Aid Funds, Inc., 94 F.3d 1260, 1263 (9th Cir.1996) cert. denied, --- U.S. ----, 117 S.Ct. 2496, 138 L.Ed.2d 1003 (1997) (holding that the § 1692a(6)(C) exemption applies "only to an individual government officer or employee who collects debt as part of his government employment responsibilities"). Defendants direct the court to the following cases, all of which stand for the proposition that administrative student loan agencies that begin to service student loans prior to the debtor's default of the loans are excluded from application of the FDCPA under the "debt collector" exception, 15 U.S.C. § 1692a(6)(F)(iii). (FN2)  In Edler v. Student Loan Marketing Assoc., 1993 WL 625570, at *2 (D.D.C. Dec. 13, 1993), the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, after a lengthy analysis of 15 U.S.C. § 1692a(6)(F)(iii), held that because the debtor's loans were not in default when the student loan administration agency began to service them, the FDCPA was inapplicable to that agency as a matter of law.  Finding likewise, the United States District Court for Connecticut determined in Coppola v. Conn.  Student Loan Found., 1989 WL 47419, at * 2 (D.Conn. March 22, 1989), that "the legislative history of the [FDCA] indicates that Congress intended that parties who service debts not in default when obtained (such as mortgages and student loans) should be excluded from the Act's coverage."   See also Fischer v. UNIPAC Serv.  Corp., 519 N.W.2d 793, 799 (Iowa 1994) (discussing the application of the FDCPA to loan servicing agencies and stating "[w]e believe that collection efforts by holders of federally insured student loans or their servicing companies are simply not the kind of activity Congress intended to regulate.").


Barlett v. Heibl, 128 F.3d 497 (7th Cir. 1997), at 498,  “The debt collector is perfectly free to sue within thirty days; he just must cease his efforts at collection during the interval between being asked for verification of the debt and mailing the verification to the debtor. Consumer Credit Protection Act, Section 809(b), as amended, 15 U.S.C.A. section 1692g(b).


Rabideau v. Management Adjustment Bureau, 805 F.Supp, 1086 (at 1092) states that “If the consumer disputes the debt or requests, in writing, the name of the original creditor, then the collector must halt all collection efforts until it sends  verification of the debt or the creditor’s name to the consumer.  15 U.S.C. Section 1692g(b).  However, absent such dispute or notification during the thirty day validation period, the debt collector may continue its collection efforts.  “While continuing efforts to collect debt may occur within 30-day validation period provided under Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), those efforts must terminate for at least that period from date validation demand is received by debt collector, within the 30-day period, until date that information demanded is provided to debtor.


Heintz v. Jenkins, 514 US 291, at 291 (1995) FDCPA applies to lawyers engaged in debt collection and states specifically as follows: “…a lawyer who regularly tries to obtain payment of consumer debts through legal proceedings meets the Act’s definition of ‘debt collector’: one who ‘regularly collects or attempts to collect, directly or indirectly, [consumer] debts owed … another.” 15 U.S.C. Section 1692a(6) Additionally, a 1986 senate report 99-405 included attorney’s as well as judges in the prohibitions


Martinez v. Law Offices of David J .Stearn 128 F.3e 500, 501  “Upon acting upon a validation notice by disputing the debt, a consumer is  under no obligation to respond to the complaint.” 


O'Connor v. Check Rite, Ltd., D.Colo.1997, 973 F.Supp. 1010 Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is strict liability statute, and consumer need only show one violation of its provisions to establish FDCPA claim.


 Baker v. G. C. Services Corp., C.A.9 (Or.) 1982, 677 F.2d 775 This subchapter is designed to protect consumers who have been victimized by unscrupulous debt collectors, regardless of whether valid debt actually exists. 


Dalton v. FMA Enterprises, Inc., M.D.Fla.1997, 953 F.Supp. 1525 Purpose of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act was not to shield consumers from embarrassment and inconvenience which are natural consequences of debt collection. 


Wiener v. Bloomfield, S.D.N.Y.1995, 901 F.Supp. 771 Broad remedial purpose of Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is not concerned with intent of debt collector;  its concern is with likely affect of various collection practices on mind of least sophisticated consumer.


Blackwell v. Professional Business Services of Georgia, Inc., N.D.Ga.1981, 526 F.Supp. 535. This subchapter was designed to safeguard consumers in their dealings with business. 


Rutyna v. Collection Accounts Terminal, Inc., N.D.Ill.1979, 478 F.Supp. 980  This subchapter was enacted by Congress to eliminate abusive, deceptive, and unfair debt collection practices. 


Peasley v. Telecheck of Kansas, Inc., Kan.App.1981, 637 P.2d 437, 6 Kan.App.2d 990 This subchapter was enacted to eliminate false, deceptive, misleading, unfair, or harassing debt collection practices. 


Shapiro and Meinhold v. Zartman, Colo.1992, 823 P.2d 120 "Debt collectors," for purposes of Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, includes attorneys whose practices are limited to purely legal matters. 


Heintz v. Jenkins, U.S.Ill.1995, 115 S.Ct. 1489, 514 U.S. 291, 131 L.Ed.2d 395 Fair Debt Collection Practices Act applied to lawyer regularly engaged in consumer debt-collection litigation on behalf of creditor client. 


Wadlington v. Credit Acceptance Corp., C.A.6 (Mich.) 1996, 76 F.3d 103 Attorneys engaged in litigation were "debt collectors" subject to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) where they filed lawsuits on behalf of client to collect debts allegedly owed by consumers. 


Avila v. Rubin, C.A.7 (Ill.) 1996, 84 F.3d 222 Validation notice, which informed debtor that he had 30 days to dispute debt and which followed with statement that if "above does not apply" debtor had ten days to pay up or civil suit could be initiated against debtor, was entirely inconsistent and failure to comply with Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), even though there was no evidence of actual consumer confusion.       


Austin v. Great Lakes Collection Bureau, Inc., D.Conn.1993, 834 F.Supp. 557 Debt collection agency's willful and repeated disregard of consumer's clear request to discontinue its attempts to contact consumer at her office constituted direct violation of provision of Fair Debt Collection Act prohibiting debt collector from contacting consumer at time or place known to be inconvenient to consumer. 


U.S. v. Central Adjustment Bureau, Inc., N.D.Tex.1986, 667 F.Supp. 370, affirmed as modified on other grounds 823 F.2d 880 Government established by preponderance of evidence that collection agency and many of its debt collectors, including some supervisors and managers in regional collection offices, used abusive, deceptive, and unfair debt collection practices in violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act;  evidence indicated that telephone calls were made to debtors before 8:00 a.m. and after 9:00 p.m., that debtors' places of employment were called after agency was told not to do so by debtors or employers, that third parties were contacted about debts without debtors' consent, that racial slurs and obscenities were used in attempting to collect debts, and that collectors falsely represented to debtors that they would be arrested or jailed or that property would be seized or garnished. 


O'Connor v. Check Rite, Ltd., D.Colo.1997, 973 F.Supp. 1010 Consumer failed to establish that he had made written request that debt collector cease any further communications, as required for consumer to prevail under section of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) prohibiting further communications following such a written request, based solely on the fact that following such an alleged communication, of which consumer presented no direct written evidence, debt collector had mailed collection letter which specifically referred to this section of the FDCPA. 


Brady v. Credit Recovery Co., Inc., D.Mass.1998, 26 F.Supp.2d 201 General principle of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), entitling a debt collector to assume the validity of a debt absent a written dispute, carries over to the anti-fraud provision of the FDCPA. 


Hancock v. Tri-State Ins., 43 Ark.App. 47, 858 S.W.2d 152, 154 (1993)

In contract dispute, it is court's duty to enforce contracts as they are written and in accordance with ordinary meaning of language used and overall intent and purpose of the parties.


When contract is ambiguous, its construction is question of law for the court, and, in such circumstances, court will apply the rules of construction.


[4] [5] [6] In a contract dispute, "[i]t is the duty of courts to enforce contracts as they are written and in accordance with the ordinary meaning of the language used and the overall intent and purpose of the parties."  Hancock v. Tri-State Ins., 43 Ark.App. 47, 858 S.W.2d 152, 154 (1993).  "[W]hen a contract is ambiguous, its construction is a question of law for the court," and, in such circumstances, a court will apply the rules of construction.  Hartford Fire Ins. Co. v. Carolina Cas. Ins. Co., 52 Ark.App. 35, 914 S.W.2d 324, 326 (1996).  


In The Supreme Court of the State of Kansas No. 94,380

MBNA America Bank, N.A. v. Loretta K. Credit (yes that is her name)

Many consumers who have chose not to continue paying their credit card bills for what ever reason they had, found themselves getting an Arbitration Award rendered against them. By far most were arbitrated by a company called National Arbitration Forum. We have known for years the connection between National Arbitration Forum and Wolpoff and Abramson. We have known for years that as a consumer, you would not have any chance of winning your arbitration. Their clear biased decisions were clear evidence that you as a consumer could not possibly win.


For years National Arbitration Forum advertised to banks telling them they could "protect" them from class action suits brought against them by consumers who have gone through the arbitration process. They have thrown huge and lavish parties inviting all the big names in the banking industry. This all done in an attempt to gain new "customers".


With all the parties and seminars with banks, how could National Arbitration Forum not be biased? If they ruled against the bank, the bank would no longer want to use them as their "exclusive" arbitration forum! However, for many years, the courts have turned a blind eye to the injustice that American's are facing everyday by this corrupt and biased system. UNTIL NOW!


Finally a court has decided to do their job and protect the American Citizen from this abuse. We proudly stand up and applaud the Kansas Supreme Court. This honorable court has now ruled that an Arbitration Award CANNOT be confirmed without showing a "signed" Arbitration Agreement between all parties involved. This is a landmark decision for consumers. See the ruling here.

Note: Loretta is a pro se litigant


Toppings v. Meritech Mortgage

Arbitrator bias - West Virginia Supreme Court holds that Meritech cannot use arbitrators who rely on the corporation for income. Unconscionability Based on bias by the National Arbitration Forum. See: Toppings v. Meritech Mortgage Services, Inc.—Reply Brief ...

McQuillan v. Check 'N Go of North Carolina, Inc. No. 04-CVS-2858 (Super. Ct. N.C. filed July 27, 2004)

Let me put my own “biases” on the table at the outset. Based upon extensive investigation and interviews with literally hundreds of people, my law firm, Trial Lawyers for Public Justice, has argued vociferously in several different court cases around the nation that the National Arbitration Forum is not a truly neutral organization. Instead, we have argued, National Arbitration Forum has conducted itself in ways that suggest that it in disputes between consumers and large corporations (and particularly banks and other lenders), that the National Arbitration Forum as an institution is pre-disposed to favor the corporations and lenders. McQuillan v. Check N Go


Baron v. Best Buy CASE NO. 99-14028-E

There is substantial evidence that National Arbitration Forum is likely to be biased in favor of corporations in the financial services industry, such as defendants.

The National Arbitration Forum has made inappropriate promises to companies in the financial services industry.

National Arbitration Forum has evidenced a likely bias in favor of financial services companies by engaging in inappropriate ex parte contacts soliciting business from financial institutions. Instead of communicating with these companies as a truly neutral decision maker, National Arbitration Forum's solicitations to financial services companies and their defense counsel communicate a strong sympathy for those companies. National Arbitration Forum's solicitations suggest that consumer lawsuits are a battle between the companies and their customers, and that National Arbitration Forum will be taking the companies' side in "improving their bottom line" in that battle. The letters described above establish that National Arbitration Forum officials solicit new business by promising prospective business clients and their counsel that its procedures will favor their interests relative to those of their consumers in adjudicating any future dispute. Fair Credit Billing Act (15 U.S.C. 1666-1666j)


This Act, amending the Truth in Lending Act, requires prompt written acknowledgment of consumer billing complaints and investigation of billing errors by creditors. The amendment prohibits creditors from taking actions that adversely affect the consumer's credit standing until an investigation is completed, and affords other protection during disputes. The amendment also requires that creditors promptly post payments to the consumer's account, and either refund overpayments or credit them to the consumer's account.


On Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida


Cancel Student Loans Debt .Info See: http://cancelstudentloansdebt.info is an information website about  how Student Loans Debt is Uncollectable.



Fair Credit Reporting Act (15 U.S.C. §§ 1681-1681(u), as amended)
The Act protects information collected by consumer reporting agencies such as credit bureaus, medical information companies and tenant screening services. Information in a consumer report cannot be provided to anyone who does not have a purpose specified in the Act. Companies that provide information to consumer reporting agencies also have specific legal obligations, including the duty to investigate disputed information. Also, users of the information for credit, insurance, or employment purposes must notify the consumer when an adverse action is taken on the basis of such reports. Further, users must identify the company that provided the report, so that the accuracy and completeness of the report may be verified or contested by the consumer.

Fair Credit and Charge Card Disclosure Act (codified in scattered sections of the U.S. Code, particularly 15 U.S.C. 1637(c)-(g))
This Act, amending the Truth in Lending Act, requires credit and charge card issuers to provide certain disclosures in direct mail, telephone and other applications and solicitations to open-end credit and charge accounts and under other circumstances.

Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (15 U.S.C. §§ 1692-1692o, as amended)
Under this Act (Title VIII of the Consumer Credit Protection Act), third-party debt collectors are prohibited from employing deceptive or abusive conduct in the collection of consumer debts incurred for personal, family, or household purposes. Such collectors may not, for example, contact debtors at odd hours, subject them to repeated telephone calls, threaten legal action that is not actually contemplated, or reveal to other persons the existence of debts.

Credit Repair Organizations Act (15 U.S.C. §§ 1679-1679j) This Act, Pub. L. No. 104-208, § 2451, 110 Stat. 3009-455 (Sept. 30, 1996), amending title IV of the Consumer Credit Protection Act, prohibits untrue or misleading representations and requires certain affirmative disclosures in the offering or sale of "credit repair" services. The Act bars "credit repair" companies from demanding advance payment, requires that "credit repair" contracts be in writing, and gives consumers certain contract cancellation rights.

Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act of 2003 (codified to 15 U.S.C. §§ 1681-1681x)
This Act, amending the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), adds provisions designed to improve the accuracy of consumers’ credit-related records. It gives consumers the right to one free credit report a year from the credit reporting agencies, and consumers may also purchase for a reasonable fee a credit score along with information about how the credit score is calculated. The Act also adds provisions designed to prevent and mitigate identity theft, including a section that enables consumers to place fraud alerts in their credit files. Further, the act grants consumers additional rights with respect to how their information is used. The FTC has rulemaking responsibilities under numerous provisions of the Act and study requirements under many more.

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